Demand to Observe with ALMA remains very strong

Demand to Observe with ALMA remains very strong

18 May, 2023 / Read time: 3 minutes

Preliminary results after closing the Cycle 10 Call for Proposals (CfP) shows continued strong demand for ALMA time. The community submitted 1680 proposals. Although this is a slight decrease from the most recent cycles, the amount of time requested on the 12-m array increased to over 29,000 hours, which is the most time ever requested in a single cycle. This implies an overall oversubscription rate of 6.9 on the 12-meter array. The amount of time requested on the 7-m and Total Power arrays also remains very robust, with approximately 15,000 hours requested on each array.  

“We are delighted by the remarkable response that the community exhibits for ALMA year after year, and we look forward to see which proposals will be selected for Cycle 10.”, said the ALMA Director Sean Dougherty.

The community continues to exhibit strong interest in Large Programs. In Cycle 10, 44 Large Programs were submitted that requested nearly 5000 hours on the 12-meter array, which is a record number of Large Programs submitted in a single cycle.

Joint Proposals with the James Webb Space Telescope (JWST), Very Large Array (VLA), and the Very Large Telescope (VLT) were offered for the first time in Cycle 10. The community responded enthusiastically to this new opportunity, as 42 Joint Proposals were submitted to request over 1200 hours on the 12-meter array. In total, 26 Joint Proposals requested time on JWST, 10 requested the VLA, and 10 requested the VLT.

Executing a Call for Proposals is a year-around effort, from developing new observing capabilities, updating and testing software, revising documentation, supporting the community, and running the proposal review process.  This was a particularly challenging Cycle since the cyberattack from last year significantly reduced the amount of time available for these activities.

Next, all Cycle 10 proposals will be reviewed through a dual-anonymous procedure. “We are in the process of assigning proposals to individual reviewers, who will rank the proposals based on scientific merit to determine which proposals will be observed.”, says ALMA Observatory Scientist John Carpenter. 

The results of the proposal review will be sent to proposers in August 2023, and Cycle 10 observations are anticipated to start on October 1st, 2023. More information can be found in the ALMA Science portal.

Additional Information

ALMA is a partnership of ESO (representing its member states), NSF (USA) and NINS (Japan), together with NRC (Canada), NSTC and ASIAA (Taiwan), and KASI (Republic of Korea), in cooperation with the Republic of Chile. The Joint ALMA Observatory is operated by ESO, AUI/NRAO and NAOJ.